The 5th Avenue Theatre’s new season also offers “Man of La Mancha,” “The Pajama Game” and “The Secret Garden,” and it includes installation of a new sound system in the theater.
The 5th Avenue Theatre will be dreaming the impossible dream, discovering a secret garden, whooping it up in pajamas and throwing a high-school reunion in its seven-show 2016-17 season. It also will present the Seattle debut of the 2015 Tony Award winner for best musical, “Fun Home,” and celebrate the 90th birthday of its historic downtown showplace by installing a new sound system that patrons have clamored for.
The 5th Avenue Theatre 2016-17 season schedule:
• “Man of La Mancha” (Oct. 7-30), staged by Allison Narver. Based on the landmark Cervantes novel “Don Quixote,” it will get an all-new airing at 5th Avenue, where it was last seen two decades ago.
• “Disney’s The Little Mermaid” (Nov. 23-Dec. 31). Drawn from a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, and an animated Disney movie, this show fared poorly on Broadway. But 5th Avenue artistic director David Armstrong says this is a new touring edition, a well-received reboot that premiered in Holland. The score is by Howard Ashman, Alan Menken and Glenn Slater; playwright Doug Wright penned the book.
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• “The Pajama Game” (Feb. 9-March 5, 2017), directed by Bill Berry. This vivacious 1954 musical about a labor-management romance hasn’t been mounted before by 5th Ave, notes Armstrong. He sees a tie-in between the plot about a union strike and the current movement to raise the minimum wage. The rousing Richard Adler-Jerry Ross score spun off the hit tune “Hey There.”
• “Murder for Two” (March 25-June 4, 2017) by Kellen Blair and Joe Kinosian. This murder mystery rolled into a musical comedy was a big hit in Chicago. Tag-team style, the two actor-composers portray a detective and a cluster of crime suspects, and provide piano accompaniment. This coproduction will be performed at ACT.
• “The Secret Garden” (April 14-May 6, 2017), by Marsha Norman with music by Lucy Simon. Based on Frances Hodgson Burnett’s beloved Edwardian tale of an unhappy orphan who blossoms in a hidden garden, the musical will be performed as a coproduction with Washington, D.C.’s Shakespeare Theatre Company. Armstrong is staging the piece (which, by the way, he also directed as his first 5th Ave show in 1999).
• “Romy & Michele’s High School Reunion” (June 8-July 2, 2017). Based on a 1997 film comedy with Lisa Kudrow and Mira Sorvino as friends trying to impress old classmates at a high-school reunion, this world premiere aimed at Broadway was written by Robin Schiff. Gwendolyn Sanford and Brandon Jay (music contributors to Netflix’s “Orange is the New Black”) created the score; Kristin Hanggi directs.
• “Fun Home” (July 11-30, 2017). Alison Bechdel’s autobiographic graphic novel about coming of age as a lesbian in a family full of secrets thrives in this moving and much-lauded Broadway hit written by Lisa Kron, with music by Jeanine Tesori. The five-time Tony winner comes to Seattle on national tour.
The 5th Avenue will go dark in August and September this year for the installation of a new sound system and improvements to the theater’s lobby and restrooms. In the future, the company plans to install new seats and make other renovations in the auditorium.
Details and ticket information: 206-625-1900 or 5thavenue.org.